Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Nazari Wall

The Nazari wall is one of the ancient archeological remains of the Islamic presence in Granda, Spain. A large section of the wall was destroyed by an earthquake in the 19th-century, which remained as a void until Antonio Jiménez Torrecillas designed an intervention not long ago.

Local and national heritage regulations dictated that the new wall should be capable of demolition in the future without damaging the original construction. This required designing special foundations that kept the old ones and designing a wall that is stable but also demountable. The architect chose granite slabs to accomplish the last, dry stacking them in a manner that creates interest both inside and out.

Influenced by "old military fortifications, the spirit of secret passageways and night patrols", there are two small openings on either side of the 40 meter wall allow access from one side of the wall to the other, via a narrow passageway between the two stacked granite walls. Torrecillas wanted visitors "to negotiate a world of light and darkness that is a part of the myth of underground Granada." Combined with the numerous apertures in the two walls, this space captures something of that essence without immediately recalling any specific historical form.

The intervention in Nazarí wall is the first step in a large urban design that will preserve the surrounding area.

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